Preliminary Appeal for Response to Food Insecurity in Mauritania - MRT121

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Appeal Target: US$ 412,889

Geneva, 13 January 2012

Dear Colleagues,

The shortage of rain during 2011 has caused significant drop in agricultural production and fodder for animals in Mauritania. The Government of Mauritania together with the World Food Programme (WFP) and other agencies has carried out a food security assessment in July and October 2011 which has revealed worrying facts. Due to the poor rainfall last year, the forthcoming harvest is predicted to have a 48% decline of gross output of all combined cereals in relation to previous years.

As a consequence, the Government of Mauritania has officially declared an emergency situation throughout the southern and south-eastern territories and developed a response plan with various components. The costs for the implementation of the response plan are an estimated 157 million USD.

The Government is planning to cover USD 80.2 million, or 51% and appeals at the same time for assistance from the UN system and international NGOs operating in Mauritania in order to bridge the financial/material gap needed for the realisation of the emergency plan in order to safe life.

The Lutheran World Federation/Department for World Service (LWF-DWS)/Mauritania is an active member of the Emergency Forum in Mauritania, grouping together UN Humanitarian agencies, Government, local and international civil society organizations, Red Cross and Red Crescents societies. With the appeal on hand, LWF Mauritania is applying for funds to respond to the magnitude of the food crisis and to fill gaps which are not covered by the Government or other humanitarian agencies.

In its response, LWF will focus on children, pregnant and lactating women and elderly people. The objectives of the emergency response are to i) save the lives of the most vulnerable people by providing nutritious food supplies, and ii) to build capacities of vulnerable households so that they can produce their own food on long-term basis and earn a small income in order to gain a level of independence from humanitarian assistance.

During the six-month implementation period, LWF is planning to support 30.000 persons (3,500 children, 13,700 women and 12,800 men). The emergency response will focus on most vulnerable areas where LWF is already operating, namely the southern region of Brakna, the southeastern region of Hodh Echarghi and in Nouakchott town.